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DEATH'S COUNTRY

 

R.M. Romero

Young Adult, Peachtree Teen, 2024

Kirkus Starred Review

LAKELORE meets “Orpheus and Eurydice” when two Miami teens travel to the underworld to retrieve their girlfriend’s soul.

Andres Santos of São Paulo was all swinging fists and firecracker fury, a foot soldier in the war between his parents, until he drowned in the Tietê River… and made a bargain with Death for a new life. A year later, his parents have relocated the family to Miami, but their promises of a fresh start quickly dissolve in the summer heat. 

Instead of fists, Andres now uses music to escape his parents’ battles. While wandering Miami Beach, he meets two girls: photographer Renee, a blaze of fire, and dancer Liora, a ray of sunshine. The three become a polyamorous triad, happy, despite how no one understands their relationship. But when a car accident leaves Liora in a coma, Andres and Renee are shattered. 

Then Renee proposes a radical solution: She and Andres must go into the underworld to retrieve their girlfriend’s spirit and reunite it with her body—before it’s too late. Their search takes them to the City of the dead, where painters bleed color, songs grow flowers, and regretful souls will do anything to forget their lives on earth. But finding Liora’s spirit is only the first step in returning to the living world. Because when Andres drowned, he left a part of himself in the underworld—a part he’s in no hurry to meet again. But it is eager to be reunited with him... 

In verse as vibrant as the Miami skyline, critically acclaimed author R.M. Romero has crafted a masterpiece of magical realism and an openhearted ode to the nature of healing.

Rights Sold:

World: Peachtree Teen

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